Feminism is transnational. Yet the common ground between different activist scenes is more an assumption than a concrete reality. A discussion that began in the fall of 2016 on the Facebook page Working Group on Post-socialist Neoliberalism and Social Movements noted the absence of a shared decolonial public space for left feminists. We don’t talk often enough among Bulgaria, Ghana, Ireland, Turkey, Lebanon and South Korea, neither about current developments, nor about common themes that emerge from the twisted (in the good and bad sense) political practices of global feminism. Whereas we can gather around our experience of witnessing manifestations of the same global historical structural problems assert themselves over and over again, we also assume that stances taken or compromises made are site-specific and mutually incomprehensible.
To address this situation, we are looking for short audio and textual materials from feminists all over the world to contribute to a stories-and-discussion podcast and to individual and collective articles that will regularly bring together feminist lefties (or lefty feminists) around one openly queer theme- meaning, in this case, a broad and less-conformist theme that helps “make strange” our high- and low- political quotidians and longue-duree histories of struggle, wherever those may be situated.
The aim is to reflect on core issues of contemporary left feminism by using less common entry points. We want listeners to get a feel for the worlds and dilemmas inhabited by comrades in different locations. But ultimately the point is to have the possibility to engage with particular political stories in a way that is curious about peculiar circumstances but attentive to drawing conclusions- partial as they might be.
- [FeminEasts] Queer Podcasting from Around the Blocs
3 to 4 stories of maximum ten minutes each from different contributors, followed by a short round-table dialogue among contributors of the specific edition. Ideally, each edition will be curated by a different person. Contributors will be asked to provide additional materials concerning their specific story or context, whereas the curator would write a 1000-word companion text for the podcast.
The audio “stories” podcast guests are expected to contribute anything from interviews, recordings of meetings/conversations/events (with permission from those involved), audio diaries, scripted or dramatised pieces, audio collages, to readings. We will be able to provide minimal technical assistance and guidance, but for the moment we are content and even pleased with lo-fi, amateur aesthetics. Podcast guests will be asked to listen in advance to the materials submitted by their fellow contributors and reflect on the pieces during the round-table segment.
The curator of a particular theme should serve as moderator and co-editor of the show. The curator may propose a theme or work within one of the suggested themes. Themes can be unusual, but individual stories should link to feminism, politics or current events while trying to develop the proposed theme. For example, a theme such as “Dirt” may lead to a story about farming and sustainability as part of feminist politics, to an interview about corruption in a gender equality agency (the subject of a press expose in Romania recently), to a memory about a US teenage girl not wanting to wash at the height of the grunge era (the topic of the “Dirty Girls” documentary). We are trying to help guests speak as individuals constrained by contexts, about these contexts, and to avoid their turning into ventriloquists for their particular “scene”- it seems only fair.
- [FeminEasts] Textual contributions
We invite individual or collective texts on topics of interest that attempt to situate a locally specific problem/issue/struggle within a broader global context and outline the local particularities and challenges to make it resonate with a more global feminist audience. We also invite – and will actively encourage and/or curate ourselves – replies to already published texts. The suggested length is between 1.500 and 2.500 words.
- [FeminEasts] Photographic essays
Photos that portray specific everyday and local manifestations of feminist problems, achievements, or struggles in different contexts, accompanied with brief description of 150 or more words, are welcomed. Comparisons between contexts or replies to already published photos from different settings are also encouraged.
Each of these show/text/photo-essay will be hosted on the LeftEast platform.
We envision a series of 4 podcasts to be released regularly over the next year. Please let us know what you are interested in listening to, or would love to hear about something or from someone; would like to contribute a story or curate a show, or have other skills and time to share them with us.
If you have ideas for podcasts, written contributions or photo essays, please submit them by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org